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and its inhabitants as Soviet citizens ... It means, therefore, nothing less
than that these people will be wedged within the framework of the Soviet
system and in all probability exterminated.
" The silence which until now has been maintained on this subject by
the Government could only be explained by the existence of those unfor-
tunate people, women and children, still in Russia, who have been driven
to the remote Asiatic regions, chiefly to the polar regions . . . To-day, that
reason is valueless. We can no longer help our brothers and sisters by
maintaining silence. The policy existing until now of hiding our wrongs
from the eyes of the world can no longer be effective, instead it can only
harm our cause.
" The silence of the Government can be explained but cannot be justified.
The voices of those who are coming here to Britain from Soviet exile bear
witness that our people left in Russia have, without hesitation, rejected
the idea of bargaining a part of the Polish soil in exchange for their lives
or even for material help.
"... To-day, the official Press writes that the Treaty of Julyc is appraised
as one of the greatest Polish contributions to this war/ Where is the proof
of this ? Does the proof lie in the fact that to-day our right to half our
territory is being questioned by one of our military allies and that our other
allies remain silent ? Does the proof lie with the tragic fate of a great section
of our population still imprisoned in the Soviet Union ?
"And what of our contribution to the war in 1939 : forty divisions of our
best soldiers, our entire national capital, all our State and civil assets, the
blood of our dead and murdered people ?
" We were the first combatants of this war, just as Belgium was in the
last war, but while the restoration of Belgium was the first item in the war
aims of the Entente, our policy has permitted such a state of affairs to arise
that our existence as a nation, for which we have risked our all against the
foe, is now threatened within the confines of our own camp.
cc For one and a half years our Premier has continuously assured us that
Stalin desired to see a c great and strong Poland.* If this is not so, if the
Soviet Premier is conducting a different policy, why is the world opinion
being convinced otherwise ? And if so, for whose benefit ?
cc The Polish-Russian problem ought not to be kept secret. The world
should not be lulled into thinking that such a problem does not exist, or
that Poland does not consider it to be important.
"As far as Poland is concerned, the only frontier she recognises is the
frontier of the Riga Treaty. The war we are fighting is with the aim that
treaties, at least, are made to be kept.
f€ The best means of informing the world of what has transpired and of the
situation as it stands, and to define Polish policy, is to change the present
Government. No declaration, no c irresponsible decision/ can have any
<e The present Government can help the Polish policy only in one
In 1942, the Soviet demands presented in London and Washington in
connection with the Polish territories had met with a refusal. Now,
however, in the beginning of 1943, when the Russian winter offensive
had already begun to give good results the Kremlin decided to employ
the method of fait accompli and to act independently. The Note of
January 16, ostentatiously handed to the Allied Governments, was in
itself a challenging move* Sikorski's appeals to the Allied Powers could